Challenges and opportunities

I came across this post this morning while “reviewing my life” on Facebook, the last couple of years of it anyway, and decided to reblog it. Why? First, because it still tugs at my heartstrings and second, because it reminds me that inherent in every challenge is the opportunity for the grandest effort or the smallest step, either of which moves us closer to our God “manifestedness”. It may not be the easiest thing we’ve ever done, but it is possible to relinquish the mask, burn the cape, and embrace who we really are, flaws and all.

And in this grand life of mine, the journey through the good, the bad, and the ugly continues…and it is good.

My Cross-Country Road Trip & Beyond

I’ve blogged lately about how wonderful it is being home on the farm. As great as it is, though, my visit here has also presented a few challenges that are giving me the opportunity to resolve some issues. It often feels like I’m walking back in time learning things I missed the first time and unlearning a few things that I did.

The challenge isn’t a problem most days but on the days that it is, I find myself asking, “What am I supposed to take from this experience?” The answer is clear but the process isn’t so easy. I won’t go into detail about it but sometimes I resent having to go through it. I know that once I do, though, it’ll be behind me and I’ll be a step closer to my destination.

I spent yesterday cleaning the deck and chairs then washed my car. During that time…

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An afternoon with my nieces

As my nieces embark upon another leg of their adventure today (to Bali from Abu Dhabi), I’m reminded of the afternoon I spent adventuring with them in Indian Springs State Park. We’d been to that park many times before, but we found something new to explore that day.

My Cross-Country Road Trip & Beyond

After a full day of activity Saturday—I visited a friend I hadn’t seen in over thirty years—my nieces Savanna, Ceilene and I piled into the Jeep and headed to Indian Springs State Park, the oldest state park in the country. It was a beautiful afternoon so the park was packed with visitors when we arrived. Fortunately, one of my two favorite tables was available so we soaked up some sun at the water’s edge while Savanna snapped a few photographs. A short time later, we abandoned our table for a stroll through the park. Spotting a boulder in the lake a few feet from the shore, they waded through the water and posed for pictures.

As we headed to the spring to fill our cups, I remembered the cemetery I discovered several months ago and made a U-turn. I expected their reluctance to explore but was surprised when they seemed…

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The Day After the Verdict, Round 2: Yup, Still a Joke

my name is elizabeth

Maybe this time, I thought before yesterday’s grand jury decision was announced.

Because Daniel Pantoleo, the police officer who choked Eric Garner to death on July 17, has a history of alleged race-related misconduct.

Maybe this time.

Because the NYPD forbids its members from using chokeholds — a rule that went into effect 21 years ago, long before Pantoleo was ever a cop.

Maybe this time.

Because the New York City medical coroner ruled Garner’s death a homicide.

Maybe this time.

Because the entire incident was filmed.  Because you can see in the tape, as the New York Times stated, that Garner was “not acting belligerently, posed no risk of flight, brandished no weapon and was heavily outnumbered.”  Because you can hear him say “I can’t breathe” 11 times before he dies.  Eleven.  Times.

Maybe this time.

But then the news broke.

As I tried to make sense of the decision…

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Feeling the past

The destination of the road trip was Cherokee, NC but our explorations took us to Bryson City to see the trestle bridge.

Walking along the tracks, I discovered an abandoned house and stood before it wondering about the people who’d lived there.

Who were they, and what was a day in their life like?
Were there any children? Did they swim in the river or play on its banks?
Was any of their time spent walking the nearby train tracks or the trestle bridge across the river?
Why did they leave? Were they sad to go, or happy to escape?

These are a few of the questions I pondered before I made the shot. Abandoned, yes, but I could feel the energy of this house as I stood pondering its past.